An offended Chris Matthews, on Thursday night's "Hardball," was so shocked by Sarah Palin's claim that there wasn't anybody to pray with on the McCain campaign, that he hurled multiple insults Palin's way, calling her, "a little scary," and asked if Palin thought McCain was, "the Anti-Christ?" Matthews was appalled by Palin's recent revelation that she had trouble finding someone to pray with before her vice presidential debate and the MSNBC host worried such talk about "The Deity in a political environment," wasn't "normal."
Matthews' guest panelists also joined in the fray as the Washington Post's Lois Romano declared, "I think it's bizarre and I think it's judgmental," and Mother Jones magazine's David Corn cackled it was "mean and catty." RNC chair Michael Steele was also knocked for a recent profession of faith, as Matthews blurted: "Why does everything sound like the '700 Club,' with this party now? I mean everything seems to be a religious discussion."
Matthews and his panel didn't just stop at insulting Palin's religious beliefs, they also belittled Palin for her hand gestures and attractiveness. Over video of Palin waving at a campaign rally Matthews ridiculed: "You know, doing that windshield wiper wave though is not serious. That's not a serious wave. I'm sorry that's not what you do when you want to lead the free world. That's, that's more like, 'I'm a celebrity and people like me.'
And just before that snide comment from Matthews, Romano and Corn dismissed Palin for her looks:
CNN commentator Jack Cafferty returned to his routine of bashing conservatives and Republicans in a column published on CNN.com on Tuesday titled “GOP becoming a cartoon.” He accused the Republican Party of “pandering to the right wing nuts that comprise Rush Limbaugh’s radio audience,” and listed this as the primary reason that the GOP lost the 2008 presidential election. Cafferty also bashed Republicans for being too busy “obstructing Obama's programs and criticizing the Democrats’ spending plans that are aimed at trying to bring the country out of a horrible recession.”
The commentator began by criticizing three notable Republicans -- Bobby Jindal, Sarah Palin, and Michael Steele. He labeled the Louisiana governor “embarrassing” for a small grammatical error. Cafferty denounced Palin (a regular target of his ire during the presidential campaign), accusing her of performing a “tawdry grab at a few dollars that didn’t belong to her,” after the Alaska governor decided to reimburse the taxpayer dollars she used to pay for the travel expenses of her children. But he saved the most stinging language for the Republican Party chairman, simultaneously jabbing Limbaugh in the process: “Michael Steele, the newly elected chairman of the Republican National Committee, down on his knees apologizing to the helium-filled poster boy of the conservative right? Pathetic.”
New York Times "visual op-ed" columnist Charles Blow remains giddy over Republican failures in his latest column, "Three Blind Mice." Blow's mice (aka "the axis of drivel") are Republican governor Bobby Jindal of Louisiana, RNC chairman Michael Steele, and talk show giant Rush Limbaugh (the latter of whom controls "Limbaugh-tomized minions of the far, far right").
All these insults are packed into one puny-sized column in Saturday's edition, accompanied by a graph (that would be the "visual" part) demonstrating beyond a shadow of a doubt that among citizens at large, the newly elected President of the United States is more popular than a conservative talk show host. This apparently proves something or other.
...the Republicans have dissolved into a querulous lot of nags and naysayers without a voice, a direction or a clue, and we are not amused.
And who has surfaced as their saviors? Bobby Jindal, Michael Steele and Rush Limbaugh -- the axis of drivel.
On Thursday's Countdown show, MSNBC political analyst Richard Wolffe of Newsweek compared Rush Limbaugh to rapper Sister Souljah and Barack Obama's racist former minister, the Reverend Jeremiah Wright, as Wolffe advised the Republican party to "kill some sacred cows" by denouncing "extremist" Limbaugh. Wolffe: "What they first of all need to do is to kill some sacred cows here. ... for President Clinton, it was Sister Souljah. For President Obama, he had to confront Reverend Wright. This is their Reverend Wright. And unless they deal with extreme voices within their own party, within their own movement, they're not going to reach those independent voters..." And after showing a clip of Limbaugh bouncing up and down on stage at CPAC, host Keith Olbermann cracked that "killer clowns from outer space is less disturbing for children."
According to the Politico Democratic strategists, months ago, planned to paint Rush Limbaugh as a bad guy to hurt the GOP and on Wednesday, the "Today" show followed that blueprint as Matt Lauer pilloried RNC Chairman Michael Steele over his flap with the talk show host:
Doesn't Rush Limbaugh put people like you in a very tough position? If you agree with him publicly it sounds like you're rooting against the economic recovery and yet if you disagree with him and call him an "entertainer" and say he's provocative and sometimes what he says is "ugly," you're put in the position where you gotta run and apologize to him.
Lauer repeatedly misinterpreted Limbaugh's comment that he wants Obama's to fail, never clarifying that Limbaugh is rooting against his policies precisely because they will hurt the economy as Lauer presented the false choice of, you're for Obama or you're against the economic recovery, to Steele:
Mr. Steele, let me try it this way, there are as many Republicans out there as well as Democrats who are unemployed right now. People are hurting across this country. Republicans, as I mention, like Democrats are losing their homes, they're unable to send their kids to school. Do you think those Republicans want the policies of Barack Obama to fail right now?
CNN host D.L. Hughley turned to the standard left-wing tactic of playing the Nazi card against Republicans on his program on Saturday evening: “The tenets of the Republican Party are amazing and they seem warm and welcome. But when I watch it be applied -- like you didn’t have to go much further than the Republican National Convention....It literally look[s] like Nazi Germany.” He went on to say that blacks weren’t welcome in the party: “It just does not seem -- like not only are we not welcome -- not only are we not welcome, but they don’t even care what we think.” He later described the GOP as “reactionary.” [audio available here]
The stand-up comedian-turned-TV host made the remark during a segment with Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele and Chuck D, a former member of the hip-hop group Public Enemy. Unfortunately, Steele did not verbally react to Hughley’s Nazi characterization. Chuck D, on the other hand, expressed his agreement with the host about blacks supposedly not being welcome in the Republican Party: “I covered the Republican convention in ‘96 for MTV...and -- seriously, their agenda was totally somewhere else, which totally -- you know, didn’t have black people or people of color in mind.” He then expressed his belief that there should be more major parties in the U.S.
Is there any political caricature more threadbare than casting the Republican Party as "the Confederacy?" CNN analyst Gloria Borger tossed that one on Thursday, with all its pejorative assumptions about hidden or not-so-hidden racial animus, noting New England states had no House Republicans.
Perhaps that's because a CNN panel was discussing RNC Chairman Michael Steele's promise to bring some hip-hop to the GOP, causing Steve Hayes to make hip-hop Hatch jokes:
WOLF BLITZER: What do you think about that, Steve?
STEPHEN HAYES, Weekly Standard: Well, when I heard him make that appeal to the hip-hop generation, I had this flash of Orrin Hatch on the Senate floor wearing the Flavor Flav clock around his neck. (LAUGHTER)
Liberal blogger Steve Gilliard passed away in 2007, but his most infamous contribution to the blogosphere lives on as leftist bloggers continue to lodge racists attacks at Michael Steele, the first African-American chairman of the Republican National Committee.
Gilliard's 2005 photoshop depicting then-Lt. Gov. Steele as a minstrel was re-syndicated by the leftist blog perceptionmanagers.org on January 31 (see screencap taken Feb. 10 at right).
The text of the blog post reads:
Apparently the Black community in Maryland (and the rest of Black America) doesn't like Michael "Oreo's fell like Locusts" Steele very much.
So the RNC would prefer to be known as the party of "Uncle Tom" instead of the Party of Racists. Way to broaden the base guys! Good luck with that in 2012.
On Friday night’s Washington Week on PBS, the liberal media elites around the table were still finding political perils for the Republicans in the new era of Democratic dominance. NPR anchor Michele (pretentiously pronounced Mee-chelle) Norris substituted for Gwen Ifill, and noted President Obama still faced fire from the "Republican machinery," symbolized by Rush Limbaugh. Former Time reporter John Dickerson suggested there was real "political peril" in associating the GOP with Rush, as Obama masterfully suggested:
NORRIS: The Republicans are going through a certain amount of party building right now. They emerged from this last election with real wounds that they have to tend to. But there are signs that the Republican machinery is still very strong, particularly the thunder at the right that we hear on the airwaves every week and in the name of Rush Limbaugh.
At the end of Sunday’s Face the Nation, host Bob Schieffer commented on former Maryland Lieutenant Governor Michael Steele as chairman of the Republican National Committee: "So it was that the party of Lincoln, which had freed the slaves, but in the process had become the party of mainly white people, came full circle and turned to an African-American Moses to lead it out of the political wilderness."
Schieffer started his commentary by explaining how the Republican Party came to be the party of "mainly white people": "When Lyndon Johnson signed the 1964 Civil Rights Act, he told a fellow Democrat 'we have lost the south for a generation,' and he was right. Richard Nixon capitalized on southern anger brought on by that act, developed a southern strategy, which emphasized states' rights, won the presidency twice, and a region where there had been few Republicans since the Civil War became the base of the reborn Republican Party."
13:47 CNN cuts to Brady briefing room, Press Secretary Robert Gibbs making opening announcements before questions. Announces Obama event to commemorate 200th anniversary of birth of Abraham Lincoln.
13:52, female reporter: On Tom Daschle, if you could take a step back, we have two nominees paying back taxes. An awful lot of money... what kind of a message does it send?
Robert Gibbs says Daschle discovered a mistake and paid for it, including penalty fees. Says he hopes Senate will examine not just "one mistake in a career" but Daschle's whole career in public service.
The main stream media has done it again. I was blogging at the Republican National Committee elections on Friday, and I asked newly elected Chairman Michael Steele if the RNC would stand behind Rush Limbaugh in the midst of the attacks the radio host was getting from Democrats. The Washington Post referred to my question and Steele's response. Here is what Chris Cillizza of the Washington Post wrote:
Asked about the controversy surrounding Rush Limbaugh and his back and forth with President Barack Obama, Steele was careful not to wholly embrace the controversial conservative talk radio host. "Rush will says what Rush has to say, we will do what we have to do as a party," said Steele
Here is the actual full text question and response I had with Steele at the news presser: video
CNN's Paul Begala, in response to Friday's announcement that former Maryland governor Michael Steele had been named Republican National Committee chairman, said, "The real leader of the Republican Party in America today is a corpulent drug addict with an AM radio talk show, Rush Limbaugh."
He also said Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin is "very bitter, and divisive," "Obama is stylistically much more like Reagan," and that George W. Bush was a "spectacularly lazy president."
Readers are cautioned to have their blood pressure medications nearby before proceeding any further (video embedded below the fold with partial transcript, h/t Hot Air, file photo):
Time magazine acknowledged that Michael Steele’s election as chairman of the Republican National Committee "makes history," but their story quoted only social and political liberals for analysis. Steven Gray insisted: "In a TIME interview during that [post-election] period, Steele praised Obama's election as America's first black President. He made clear that as RNC chairman, he would move to temper the party's rigidity and truculence." Truculence? Here's the dictionary definition:
1. feeling or displaying ferocity: CRUEL, SAVAGE
2. DEADLY, DESTRUCTIVE
3. scathingly harsh; VITRIOLIC
4. aggressively self-assertive: BELLIGERENT
Steele fans and foes alike in the GOP would love to see what Steele actually said on this front, since the Time writer described it so colorfully. (Doesn't it sound like the Time writer's thinking of....Rush Limbaugh?) Then Gray turned to how Steele could display less "rigidity" on snuffing out the lives of the unborn:
CNN’s Wolf Blitzer went out of his way to point out the apparent lack of diversity in the leadership of the Republican Party during a panel discussion on Friday’s Situation Room. Just minutes earlier, Michael Steele had been elected the chairman of the Republican National Committee, and Blitzer brought up the race of many of those who had voted for him with Republican strategist Leslie Sanchez: “Take a look at the audience, though -- and I want to show our viewers a picture of the audience. Michael Steele, the first African-American leader of the RNC -- Leslie, I don’t see a whole lot of black people, at least in that group over there.” He went on to say, “It’s encouraging. I’m sure you’re encouraged that all these white people basically elected an African-American to be their leader.”
The anchor’s comment came during the CNN program’s regular “Strategy Session” discussion. Besides Sanchez, Blitzer hosted Democratic strategist Donna Brazile during the segment. He brought up Steele’s election as the first topic. After getting both women to respond to the news, Blitzer made his comment about the seeming lack of black people. Sanchez responded by conceding to his observation, in terms of the top RNC members, but then pointed out that “if you walked around that room, there’s so much diversity there. There was so much excitement for Michael Steele.”
On Thursday’s Countdown show on MSNBC, New York Times columnist Frank Rich charged that it looks "morally bad" and "idiotic" that Republicans have not elected a black candidate to federal office in six years. The Republican party also seemed to remind Rich of South Africa’s racist Apartheid policy of the past: "The fact is, this isn`t South Africa 25 years ago, this is a major political party that is essentially all white. And the hierarchy of it is definitely white. There hasn`t been a new black Republican elected to federal office, I think, in six years. And so, what does that tell us about the party? And how does that look to voters? I think it looks like it`s the party of the last century. It looks bad. Not only is it morally bad, but politically. I think it`s idiotic because it`s against the whole demographics of this country and where they’re going."
ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Yesterday NewsBusters caught up with GOPAC chairman and former Maryland Lt. Gov. Michael Steele at the Xcel Center, site of the Republican National Convention.
Steele told us the coverage of the campaign so far has "been a joke," and that "if the shoe were on the other foot, [media] would be scrutinizing the heck out of a black Republican or a Hispanic Republican" running for president.
Some excerpts of that interview are below, starting with Steele's reaction to the disparity in scrutiny of Sens. McCain and Obama (video available here):
Last week Fox News host Geraldo Rivera expressed he would be "proud" to vote for Barack Obama but on Saturday's "Geraldo At Large," he showed he still has some affinity for Hillary Clinton as well. When former Maryland Lieutenant Governor Michael Steele claimed Clinton's Bosnia gaffe was the reason for her drop in a recent poll, Rivera felt for the former First Lady as he sympathized: "I think that, that's awful. I, I feel so bad for her for that."
The following is the full exchange as it occurred on the April 5 edition of "Geraldo At Large":
GERALDO RIVERA: And Governor Steele, you have a situation where this Rasmussen poll, I was pretty shocked when I saw it, now showing Barack Obama, I think for only the second time over 50 percent. He's at 51, Hillary Clinton is at 41. That's a 10-point spread. It looks as if the momentum have, has that people are, are putting the, the Wright controversy behind Obama and now seem to be rallying to him in a way that I, up until now, have not seen. you until now have not seen.